Catch up isn’t just for fries, you know…

Okay. I admit it. I have been doing a piss-poor job at blogging, lately.

There are lots of excuses, but none of them are really any good so let’s just skip all that and move right to the content part of today’s program.

Some Things of Note from the OWC:

  • Bonnie, intrepid and dutiful soul that she is, has managed to input all of the right data tags for the weather icons, which means that we now have pretty pictures on the weather page once more.These went live on Tuesday and the process involved hand-coding more than 300 tags to match the National Weather Service’s taxonomy for weather conditions. You should all shower Bonnie with appreciation and thanks.

    Get it? Shower her? Okay, fine. Moving on.

  • Bonnie (with design help from Zac) has also just launched a new feature on CuInfo called Safety Zone. This is part of our initiative around emergency communications and the area is designed to both point to important announcements about safety related events and provide links to other safety-related resources on the web at Cornell. As always, we welcome your input and thoughts.
  • Yesterday morning, we launched a new site for the Land Grant section of It looks rather similar to the uninitiated eye, so let me point out some of the highlights for you:
    • This is the first section of to be executed in CommonSpot, so it is both our test case for proof of concept AND the first time that content will be able to be updated directly by a departmental curator (as opposed to having to be processed by someone at the OWC).
    • It features Flash in a way that has never been used before on the site in the Interactive Map of New York State.

    This launch was a long-time in the making!

  • And, speaking of launches that were a long time in the making…the Outreach Portal is also live as of this morning!

And Here’s What I’ve Been Doing Instead of Blogging

Okay. So there was that one trip to to order new breeches and clipper blades for the upcoming horse show season. And maybe there was also a Google search or two about Benjamin Disraeli. But you can’t prove I wasn’t on a break while surfing.

Mostly, though, I have been up to my eyeballs in applications for next year’s student bloggers on Life on the Hill.

This is our third year of blogging and, for the first time, we opened up our application process to anyone within the undergraduate student body. This involved advertising both on campus (via flyers in buildings and email invitations to targeted groups) and on Facebook (which was surprisingly easy and cheap, but perhaps also rather ineffectual). Deadline was Monday afternoon and I received a total of 33 applications–about three times as many as is typical.

So I have literally spent the past three days (8 hours a day–no kidding) with a red pen in my hand marking up the series of essay questions we put forth to applicants. From my desk, the top candidates will move on to the lightening round, wherein they will be read and ranked by both our current bloggers and Carrie and Bonnie. Then, we have pizza and hash it all out until we have agreed on the lucky winners.

Everyone else gets a ceramic Dalmation and a box of Rice-a-Roni (the San Francisco treat).



  1. David says:


    I’m gonna leave a comment about the website. I’m Cornell ’06 and I’m coming back this fall for my MBA. I love the new website. I’ve seen the transition from the red box to what we have now and it’s remarkable. It’s very modern and probably the nicest university website in the country. But I feel like something is missing. I don’t think we’re celebrating enough of our HISTORY.

    When we first started, we were a very unique school. We went against the norm of the time period. If you were to look at our website in Cornell Facts, you wouldn’t know very much about our history. We owe more to our university than to use a short timeline to inform prospective students of our heritage. We do list some firsts in our marks of distinction, but I feel we need to do more. We need to tell the STORY of our university.

    A story will do so much more to engage people in comparison to timelines and lists. Look at the depth and detail of Stanford’s telling of their history Their story is so detailed that Cornell pops up all over the place. We have so much to share about Ezra, AD White and whatever it took to found our school. We also had key contributions to Mars explorer. There’s a lot to be told about our school that’s not being told.

    Telling the story of Cornell will help people understand the character of our school and why our school is so special.

    Another thing I hope we can add is a list of prominent alumni. People and prospective students want to know what they can achieve with a Cornell education. There’s no better indicator than what our alumni are doing. I think it’s important not only to highlight the CEO’s and judges but also the younger generation that are truly unique. We need to highlight people like Bryan Colangelo, the GM of the Toronto Raptors, and Jon Daniels, the GM of the Texas Rangers, and youngest ever GM in baseball. Seeing Cornellians excel in these exciting parts of the world will truly set us apart from the other universities.

    Thanks for reading,